One of the best conveniences of life in the states is being able to live close to your work, granted you have to work every day. Living close means you don’t have to deal with a long commute that is almost always flooded with traffic in both directions. If this is the case, you have likely considered downsizing your personal automobile to a handy and earth friendly bicycle.
The many advantages of biking to work far outweigh the obvious risks associated with this physical activity. The most minimal advantages include saving on fuel, car maintenance, and health care costs. The more lasting and significant rewards comes in the form of improved physical and mental health that result from daily exercise.
Before investing fully in this economical and beneficial routine, you should also consider the basic risks associate with biking to work and how you can protect yourself in case of accidents on the road. The biggest risk for a bicyclist on the roadways is collision with a moving vehicle. Needless to say, the resulting injuries can be debilitating or even terminal.
Fortunately, you can reduce the risk of getting involved in such an accident by practicing defensive bicycling. Map out the shortest, most convenient route and one that will avoid sharing lanes with other vehicles. Once on the road, be aware of all traffic and don’t assume drivers can see you or will yield to you. It is safest to bike defensively, obey traffic signals, and say in protected zones such as bike lanes.
The most immediate and reliable form of protection you can get for yourself is personal protective equipment such as a trusty helmet, appropriate biking clothing, and a well-maintained bicycle with the necessary reflective and lighting materials.
Lastly, if you do find yourself in an accident with another vehicle, treat it as you would if you were in your personal car: obtain the driver’s insurance and contact information; make note or take pictures of damages to yourself, your bicycle, and their vehicle; call for emergency services should you require it and make a police report for proper documentation. If you have been hurt, you are still eligible to file for personal injury claims from the other party. Know you can protect yourself beyond the physical equipment necessary for biking to work.Read More
If you’ve been injured in a car accident while riding as a passenger, you might be facing an uphill battle against several insurance companies to get coverage for your medical bills and lost wages. Being an injured passenger is particularly complicated, so take the time to find a personal injury attorney who can guide you through the legal process.
First, you have to find out who was at fault. However, this might take time. So you will need to determine if either driver had “med pay” in their insurance coverages. Med pay will help cover the cost of some medical bills without any determination of fault.
Next, you have to determine if the person driving your car had any uninsured or under-insured coverage. Uninsured or under-insured coverage will help cover the cost of your injuries if the other driver was at fault but didn’t carry enough insurance to cover your losses.
If you and the driver of your car have the same insurance policy, you will run into additional restrictions because you can’t lay claim on some line items of the insurance policy if you are one of the listed insured.
In short, being an injured passenger is frequently confusing and frustrating. In addition, the insurance companies might not fully understand all of the insurance at play. You will need to consult with an attorney to make sure your losses aren’t coming out of your pocket.Read More
For cyclists, car doors can be one of the most dangerous threats on the road. An open door can mean flipping over the bike (and the car door) at twenty miles per hour. Serious injuries can occur to the cyclist, and at times, the vehicle passenger if he or she steps out of the car as the bike hits the door.
So who is at fault and how does each person recover the costs caused by the accident? Generally, both parties will need to hire an attorney if the medical costs are high for one or both parties.
Car insurance won’t cover this kind of accident. Car insurance is only meant to cover costs while the vehicle is in operation. Homeowner’s insurance might cover some of the costs, however, homeowner’s insurance generally comes with a high deductible (like $2,500). If the medical costs associated with accident are less than $2,500, the money will have to come out of pocket.
Fault is also an important issue when dealing with a bike rider running into a car door.
• Was the vehicle in place for more than a few minutes before the door opened?
• Should the cyclist have known the car was newly parked in the space?
• Was the car parked near a designated bike lane?
• Was either person on the phone when the accident occurred?
Feelings of guilt, anger, and frustration are very common when a cyclist runs into an open car door. However, unless there are significant medical costs, each party might be better by simply covering his or her own expenses.Read More